Publication Date: October 10, 2016
The Mourning Ring
by Sarah Parke
eBook & Paperback; 350 Pages
Genre: Young Adult/Historical Fantasy
READ AN EXCERPT.
Sixteen-year-old Charlotte Bronte lives to tell stories. She longs to improve her fortunes through her writing. Charlotte’s father expects her to leave behind her childish fantasies in order to set an example for her three younger siblings.
But the Bronte children hold a secret in their veins—a smidgen of fairy blood that can bring their words to life.
When Charlotte discovers that the characters from their childish stories exist in an alternate world called Glass Town, she jumps at the opportunity to be the heroine of her own tale.
The city of Angria teeters on the brink of civil war and Charlotte and her siblings must use their magic and their wits to save its people from a tyrant with magic abilities. But entering the fictional world means forfeiting control of their own creations. If they fail, the characters they have come to know and love will be destroyed.
Charlotte is determined to save the city and characters she loves, but when the line between creator and character becomes blurred, will she choose her fantasy or her family?
She has a MFA in Writing Popular Fiction from the University of Southern Maine's Stonecoast MFA program. Her work has been published internationally, most recently in the July 2015 issue of The Writer magazine.
For more information, please visit Sarah Parke's website. You can also find her on Facebook, Twitter, and Goodreads.
Interview with Sarah Parke
1. What is your favorite part of this book and why?
My favorite part of the book is any scene between Charlotte and Emily. I pictured Charlotte as the straight-laced, responsible sister, while Emily was sort of her foil, being a bit wild and a tom boy to boot. The Charlotte and Emily scenes were fun for me to write because I got to infuse a lot of banter and witty dialogue into them. I think one of the strengths of this novel is that anyone with siblings will be able to relate to the frustrations and complications of family.
2. If you could spend time with a character from your book whom would it be? And what would you do during that day?
I would enjoy spending time with Anne Brontë. Historically, her voice and legacy have been the quietest, but based on the subjects of her novels (women’s rights, domestic violence) I think she would have a lot of interesting things to say.
3. If you could have been the author of any book ever written, which book would you choose?
I wish I had written Neil Gaiman’s Neverwhere. The concept--Alice in Wonderland meets modern London--is brilliant. It’s one of the books I can read over and over again to see how Gaiman weaves the fantasy setting with the real world.
4. Are your characters based off real people or did they all come entirely from your imagination?
All of the characters in Howarth (including the owner of the stationery store and Tabby, the Bronte’s servant) are based on real historical figures. Even the characters of Zamorna and Wellesley are techinically based on real people--the Duke of Wellington and other soldiers Charlotte and her siblings admired from the Napoleonic Wars. I used a lot of research to shape these historical figures into characters I could use for my reimagining of events. Mr. Fleming (the evil dressmaker) and Sister Kunto are entirely my creation.
5. What made you want to become a writer?
There’s a well-known quote that goes “I hate writing, but I love having written.” That’s how I feel most days. I can’t remember a time when I wasn’t writing something. I’ve gone through phases where I only wrote poetry or literary analysis, and then I really started focusing on YA fiction when I began my MFA program. What I enjoy most about being a writer is the sense of community I feel with other writers. Writing is sort of this non-glamorous hobby we all share that makes us anxious and vulnerable, but we keep doing it because it hurts more to stop. Kind of masochistic. But I have a great group of writer friends and we support and critique each other on a regular basis, so that spirit of comradery (and a little competition) keeps me motivated.
Blog Tour ScheduleWednesday, April 19
Review at 100 Pages a Day
Thursday, April 20
Excerpt at What Is That Book About
Review, Excerpt & Interview at The Book Junkie Reads
Friday, April 21
Excerpt at The Lit Bitch
Review at Queen of All She Reads
Review at History From a Woman's Perspective
Review & Excerpt at Adventures Thru Wonderland
Saturday, April 22
Interview at T's Stuff
Review at A Book Drunkard
Sunday, April 23
Review, Excerpt, & Interview at Quitterstrip
Monday, April 24
Review & Excerpt at Rainy Day Reviews
Tuesday, April 25
Guest Post at Let Them Read Books
Review at Svetlana's Reads and Views
Wednesday, April 26
Review at Just One More Chapter
Review at A Chick Who Reads